I know, I know. The title to this blog post seems like a contradiction in terms. But no one can deny that permanently exposing your daily activity isn’t healthy for anyone. In fact it’s highly advisable to limit the reach of the things you post to ensure that not just anybody can find out everything you’re up to (though this is also related to lack of restraint by hopeless digital exhibitionists in terms of posting pics and comments about their every move at all times). These days most social networks let you limit your audience to just your followers. Below we list a few tips on how to take advantage of these tools to make part of your social network content private.
Facebook has a huge array of security tweaks to hide your posts from a certain group of users. Here on the blog we’ve talked a million times about Facebook’s Security menu, but today we’re going to focus just on limiting who sees your posts.
To choose the default audience for your posts, go to the Settings menu (the top button with three lines) and then to Privacy Shortcuts. There you’ll see the section Who can see my stuff?, and inside that, Who can see your future posts? If you choose the Only me option, whatever you publish from now on won’t be visible to anybody else, including ads, auto-posts, and game notifications. If you want to make a specific post public or open to a certain audience, just adjust the audience in the drop-down menu in the edit section.
On Twitter things are rather simpler: you either share everything publicly or solely to approved followers. Obviously opting for the latter will make your account “grow” less as you can’t use your own tweets to lure in new followers. But if you’re not looking to get famous and just want your own friends and associates to know what you’re tweeting about, this might be a good idea. To make your account private, go to Settings > Privacy and content and tick the Protect my Tweets box. In addition, this will give you the possibility to accept or reject users’ follow requests.
In terms of privacy, Instagram behaves nearly identically to Twitter. When you access the Options section from the top right button on your profile, you can tick the Private account box, such that only people who follow you can see your posts.